Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Probability of Miracles


Last night I finished The Probability of Miracles by Wendy Wunder

Blurb: Dry, sarcastic, sixteen-year-old Cam Cooper has spent the last seven years in and out hospitals. The last thing she wants to do in the short life she has left is move 1,500 miles away to Promise, Maine - a place known for the miraculous events that occur there. But it's undeniable that strange things happen in Promise: everlasting sunsets; purple dandelions; flamingoes in the frigid Atlantic; an elusive boy named Asher; and finally, a mysterious envelope containing a list of things for Cam to do before she dies. As Cam checks each item off the list, she finally learns to believe - in love, in herself, and even in miracles.

Let me come about just giving two quotes from the book.  I scrambled around for a sticky note so I would remember the passages.  I marked them both for different reasons, and I want to discuss them before I fully discuss the book.

Quote one:  As Cam hugged her mother and walked back to her room, she realized she'd be spending the rest of her short life making other people feel better about the prospect of losing her.  Pg.31

Why I chose this one:  I though that this passage really showed a raw, low moment, and it was in the beginning of the book!  Everything is still being set up, and we are slowly getting to know how Cam really feels.  It is a depressing moment to realize that you are more okay with your own death than anyone else is.

Quote two:  The sky was eerily dark, like someone had spilled black ink over the stars... Pg. 177

Why I chose this one:  First off, there is more to that sentence, but this phrase fascinated me.  It was like poetry.  Glorious and smooth and simple and true and descriptive and someday, I hope that I can write like that.  I also hope that all of you out there can understand the greatness of those slim 14 words.  In the scheme of life, or even in the book, they are not of any relevance.  But within the fantastic world of literature, they are extraordinary.

Now for the book...

I'll start by saying that this book broke my heart.  Into pieces.  The raw emotions and feeling of lostness and losing faith is so apparent, that it was terribly saddening to finish.  *SPOILER* As long as there were more pages, you knew that Cam was going to live.

All the characters in this book were so human.  Lily, wanting to live happily for the little time she had left.  Alicia, not wanting to give up on her baby girl.  Nana, for refusing to let Cam think about death.  Perry, for being the child she was and sometimes feeling jealous and angry that she had to give so many things up for the obstacles in Cam's life.  And Cam herself.  For having already given up, barely letting hope take her again, before *SPOILER* death actually did.

To be honest, this entire book was wretchedly human.  The Flamingo list, for instance.  Such a true reflection of adolescent dreams, some of which are not even admitted to themselves.  Although they are there.  True, but hidden within the folds and crevices of the subconscious mind.

The plot was sort of abstract.  We start with meeting Cam, and coming to understand her situation with the Cancer, and life at Disney, and her dad's death.  Then move to the part in Maine, where at first Cam is incredibly guarded, but eventually she lets her guard down, that's when Asher comes in.  For a while, she keeps her guard down, until her sickness interrupts.  ( *SPOILER* Although I will admit, even before she really gets sick again, Asher disappoints her.  I think that affected her will power.  And it's not like that hadn't happened before.  Back when she hadn't fully let her guard down yet, she had tried to kill her self partly because of him.  Even if she wouldn't admit it.)

I refrain from saying that this book was flawless, because nothing ever is.  But this was as close as you could get.  I will be eagerly awaiting anything else Wendy Wunder has to offer, and in the mean time, will continue to speculate and wonder about this glorious novel.

5/5 stars.  Please read it.


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